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STI wins 2019 Piña Festival; undefeated for 3 years now

BACK-TO-BACK defending champion STI College of Ormoc once again claims the crown for the 3rd time as they bested seven other competing schools in Ormoc City during the Piña Festival Street and Ritual Dance Showdown 2019, held at the Ormoc City Plaza, June 23. 

The competition was rough, as all the contingents boasted brighter costumes, better choreography, and spectacular style and synchronicity. No effort was spared by the competing schools and the organizers of this event as everyone sought to produce quality dance performances. 

“We have grown tremendously for the past three years. Our contingents have become larger and more competitive. Our presentations are becoming more spectacular; our queens, no less more beautiful than the previous years. And yes; our tourists and spectators are getting bigger and bigger. This is promising sign that the Piña Festival will eventually rise up to become one of the country’s most outstanding and grandest showcase of culture, befitting a growing city with dynamic people,” said Estrella Maria Serafica-Pangilinan, Chairman of the Piña Festival 2019. 

To note, the following are the contingents in the said event: Ipil National High School (Pundok Madasigon), Liloan National High School (Pundok Sa Pinalambo na Ormocanon), Eastern Visayas State University Ormoc City Campus (Pundok Sidlakan), St. Aloysius Institute of Technology (Pundok sa Pamilyang Aloysians), New Ormoc City National High School (Pundok Madasigong Kabatan-onang Mananayaw), Linao National High School (Pundok Mapasalamaton), Valencia National High School (Pundok sa Nagkahiusang Valenciahanon) and STI College of Ormoc (Pundok sa Nagkahiusang Ormocanon). 

As the name of the competition suggests, all eight contingents vied for the grandest awards in the annual competition. 

The winner for the Best Festival Queen Costume, receiving a cash prize of Php 10,000 is Festival Queen #6, Nova Mae S. Manulat of Linao National High School. 

Meanwhile, the 2nd runner up for the 2019 Piña Festival Queen, receiving a cash prize of Php 10,000, too, is Festival Queen #10, Kaye R. Quiamco of STI College of Ormoc. The 1st runner up, receiving a cash prize of Php 15,000 is Festival Queen #6, Nova Mae S. Manulat of Linao National High School; and this year’s Piña Festival Queen 2019, receiving a cash prize of Php 25,000 is Festival Queen #2, Zuriel Cuyos of Liloan National High School. 

On the one hand, the winner for the Best Decorated Audio Van, receiving a cash prize of Php 20,000 is Linao NHS; while STI College of Ormoc dominated two major awards, Best in Contingent Costume and Best Choreographer, receiving the cash prizes of Php 50,000 and Php 40,000, respectively. 

For the Best Streetdancing Award: 3rd place, receiving a cash prize of Php 30,000, is St. Aloysius Institute of Technology; 2nd place, receiving a cash prize of Php 40,000, is Linao National High School; and the top plum, receiving a cash prize of Php 50,000, is STI College of Ormoc. 

For the Best in Grand Showdown: 2nd runner up is Linao National High School and they received Php 300,000; 1st runner-up is EVSU-OCC and they received Php 400,000; and the Grand Champion, receiving a cash prize of Php 500,000, is STI College of Ormoc. 

With this win, STI now boasts a 3-year undefeated title of Grand Champion of the Piña Festival Street and Ritual Dance Showdown. 

Meanwhile, serving as judges in this year ’s Piña Festival competitions were the country’s culture and dance experts: Limuel Rosos, Rodolfo Reveche, Peter De Vera, and Egai Bautista. Douglas Nierras served as the Chairman of the Board of Judges. 

As for the criteria for judging used, the street dancing competition employed the following: Performance 45% (Precision and Coordination, Projection, Dynamism, Fluency, Balance and Focus), Choreography 30% (Creativity and Artistry of Steps and Formation, Rhythmic Pattern, Art Style, Sustainability, Consistency and Discipline), Production Design 20% (Effectiveness of Costume and Props, Creativity and Over-all Impact), and Decorated Audio Van 5% for a total of 100%. 

For the Ritual and Showdown Competition, the contingents were judged based on the following criteria: Team Concept/Ritual 10% (Relevance to the Piña Festival, Clarity of Message of the Storyline, Interpretation), Performance 35%, Choreography 30%, and Costume & Props 25% for a total of 100%. 

For the Festival Queen Search, the candidates were judged based on the following criteria: Beauty of Face and Figure, Costume, Performance and Projection. In addition, the festival queens competed in the Preliminary Dance Showdown last June 18 during the Socio-Civic Night for the 50% of their scores. The remaining 50% was established in the Grand Showdown: Streetdance 20%, Ritual Dance 10%, and Solo Performance 20%, garnering a total of 100%. 

Special guests during the event included famous actors Joross Gamboa and EA Guzman, who spiced up the festival as they mingled and jammed with the audience. Local government officials also took part in the celebration as they danced with the audience to the tune of the Piña Festival jingle. Indeed, the Piña Festival is no ordinary celebration. 

“For all the parts and pieces that have come together beautifully tonight, to God be the Glory,” concluded 4th District of Leyte Representative Lucy Marie Torres-Gomez.

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